Date of Award


Document Type

Open Access Dissertation


Instruction and Teacher Education


College of Education

First Advisor

Susan Schramm-Pate


The purpose of the present action research study is to describe a hands-on activity model, named the Constructed Scaffold Model (CSM), used in an Advanced Placement Calculus class in a southeastern United States suburban high school. Data were collected over an 8-week period during the spring 2017 semester. The teacher-researcher developed a pretest and posttest to describe the CSM’s impact on 10 student-participants in her Advanced Placement classroom. Repeated measures t-tests were used to determine the effect of the CSM on the student-participants’ test scores. Additional qualitative data were collected from field notes, student surveys, a focus group, and student work samples to determine student-participants’ perceptions of the CSM. Findings include the class average score on the 20-question pretest was 1.5 questions correct, and the posttest average score was 13.4 for a net gain of 11.9 points. Based on an analysis of the qualitative data the following themes emerged: 1) developing conceptual understanding, 2) fostering interpersonal dynamics, and 3) improving model efficacy. The teacherresearcher developed an action plan that included meeting with school leaders, district leaders, and fellow teachers to share the results of this action research study and begin a new cycle of the CSM in the fall of 2017.